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Abstract

Inequalities in Infant Feeding Practices among the Growing Up in New Zealand Cohort †

1
Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Population Health, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
2
Nutrition and Dietetics, School of Medicine, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
3
Paediatrics, Child and Youth Health, School of Medicine, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
4
Department of Nutrition, School of Public Health, University of Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo 01246-904, Brazil
5
Centre for Longitudinal Research, School of Population Health, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
6
Social and Community Health, School of Population Health, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Presented at the 2018 Nutrition Society of New Zealand Annual Conference, Auckland, New Zealand, 28–30 November 2018.
Proceedings 2019, 8(1), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/proceedings2019008054
Published: 18 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Proceedings of 2018 Annual Meeting of the Nutrition Society of New Zealand)
Background: Nutrition in the first year of life has a profound and enduring effect on health. This study is the first in New Zealand (NZ) to provide generalizable national information about a range of infant feeding practices beyond breastfeeding.
Methods: Data were collected from 2009–2012 on 6435 infants enrolled in the Growing Up in NZ longitudinal study, using face-to-face and telephone interviews when the infant was in-utero, 6-weeks, 9-months and 31-months old. Thirteen indicators measured adherence at 9-months of age to the Ministry of Health’s Guidelines for Healthy Infants (2008), covering breastfeeding, introduction to solids, variety of diet, and inappropriate foods (e.g., sweets, hot chips, potato crisps) and drinks (e.g., fruit juice, soft drinks). Descriptive statistics and multivariate regression were used to investigate associations between indicators and maternal/household characteristics (p < 0.05).
Results: Guidelines with overall high adherence (>80%) at age 9-months were: appropriate milks, no salt/sugar added to meals, and serving an iron-rich food daily. Indicators with both low adherence (<50%) and statistically independent differences between ethnic groups were: exclusive breastfeeding to around 6-months (lower in Māori, Pacific, Asians); two serves of vegetables and fruit daily at 9-months (lower in Māori, Pacific, Asians); inappropriate foods and drinks at 9-months (higher in Māori and Pacific). Infants of younger mothers, with low maternal education, and with no partner antenatally had higher risk of not meeting these guidelines. Infants living in neighbourhoods of high deprivation had additional risk of not meeting the fruit and vegetable guideline.
Conclusions: This study highlights the urgency to better support breastfeeding and appropriate timing of introduction to solids. Additionally, vegetable and fruit intake, and avoiding discretionary foods, remain key population nutrition messages. Substantial inequalities exist in the early diets of NZ infants. Culturally- and socially-appropriate nutrition education is needed to improve infant nutrition in New Zealand.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Gerritsen, S.; Wall, C.R.; Grant, C.C.; Teixeira, J.A.; Marchioni, D.M.; Pillai, A.; Morton, S.M.B.; Castro, T.G.d. Inequalities in Infant Feeding Practices among the Growing Up in New Zealand Cohort. Proceedings 2019, 8, 54. https://doi.org/10.3390/proceedings2019008054

AMA Style

Gerritsen S, Wall CR, Grant CC, Teixeira JA, Marchioni DM, Pillai A, Morton SMB, Castro TGd. Inequalities in Infant Feeding Practices among the Growing Up in New Zealand Cohort. Proceedings. 2019; 8(1):54. https://doi.org/10.3390/proceedings2019008054

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gerritsen, Sarah, Clare R. Wall, Cameron C. Grant, Juliana A. Teixeira, Dirce M. Marchioni, Avinesh Pillai, Susan M.B. Morton, and Teresa Gontijo de Castro. 2019. "Inequalities in Infant Feeding Practices among the Growing Up in New Zealand Cohort" Proceedings 8, no. 1: 54. https://doi.org/10.3390/proceedings2019008054

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